Folks I can’t tell you how relieved I am. Really it’s quite ridiculous. I’ve just had my hair cut. It’s been almost a year… July 2020 was the last time, and the last time I had it coloured too. Lockdown has made me a pale lacklustre shadow of my former perky self, literally. I’ve never got the hang of the whole self-colouring thing. The idea of potentially having to live with a hair disaster for months on end had me toing and froing in the hair care aisle at the supermarket, trying and failing to answer the burning question: can I use this on already coloured hair? It’s a little embarrassing how huge and important such questions become when life is confined and unvarying. I am still considering whether or not to embrace the grey. Yikes! The nice people at the salon offered me a disposable mask. I prefer my own linen one, mostly because it’s reusable, leading me to another, this time truly burning question: what are we going to do about all the rubbish?


Thankfully, the clever folks at Waterhaul in Cornwall have given this some serious thought and are reimagining discarded facemasks from their local hospital as litterpickers. And what about this… previously difficult-to-recycle, single-use plastics actually being transformed back into fuel. Genius. And this, my favourite… design students Hugo Maupetit and Vivian Fischer giving discarded chewing gum a new lease of life as skateboard wheels. Or this… sort-of-related reimagining of pesky invasive species as bio-concrete by Brigitte Kock and Irene Roca Moracia. Of course, it would be better if we stopped using plastic altogether. And air-conditioning… which may well be possible with this magic white paint developed by researchers at Purdue University. Wouldn’t that be wonderful?


In other news, as they say, I have finally finalised the tags that will go out with the cushions. All the packaging is recyclable… though of course the cushions are forever. Not forever forever like nuclear waste but, you know, I hope you’d hang onto them for a while and maybe even leave them to someone in your Will.

The Boyfriend wasn’t too sure about the chewing gum to skateboard wheel idea until he saw how they collected the gum, but he is ecstatically relieved that they’ve discovered, or rather rediscovered, a coffee species that is more weather resilient without sacrificing taste. He’s one of those annoying people that can drink coffee whenever they like and still sleep at night. Really, it shouldn’t be allowed.


Talking of taste, here it is my favourite restoration of the moment: a colourful reimagining of office space in the centre of Stockholm. And perhaps a perfect backdrop for works by photographer Alan Wiseman and beautiful embroidered Irish linen by Jennifer Slattery.


I am really tickled to discover The Amateur Weather Observers, hand-makers of perhaps the most perfect item of clothing ever invented… the vest. No, not that kind of vest and yes, I’ve put mine back on. More the sleeveless pullover kind, which is even better than the other type. Really though, don’t you just love their name? I’m so uninventive. All I could come up with was my own… which, lets be honest, doesn’t exactly spark the imagination. Any suggestions for a better name gratefully received.


If you’d like to spark the imagination of the great and the good, or just get that new job, you could do worse than emulate the inimitable Leonardo Da Vinci. It seems, along with everything else, he is also the creator of the perfect résumé. Now, that definitely shouldn’t be allowed.


I’m off to enjoy a coffee while exercising my right to disconnect (yes, really) by reading Will Storr’s The Science of Storytelling and contemplating my inner Da Vinci.


A bientôt


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The featured photograph is by my good friend Tadej Turk. Not content with an honourable mention in the Monochrome Photography Awards, he has also scooped five more awards for his photography, two of which are gold medals. Congratulations Tadej! You can see more of his wonderful work here.